I was sittin' and thinkin' this morning about what I wanted to write about and share here this week, when the thought bubble popped up and reminded me that there's really nothing I enjoy more than listening to British 45's from the beat era; a listening experience that I enjoy equally as much as soul 45's, classic jazz LP's, old blues records, and, well, you get the idea. It's all the kinda stuff that helps us thrive.
Here we have the greatest British one shot of all time.
Relocated from Yorkshire to London, The Accent sadly only had one chance to record, and luckily the groundbreaking and creative Mike Vernon was behind the boards which led to this creating this absolute masterpiece of mood, folky guitars and some of the heaviest psychedelic beat ever committed to wax, back in 1967.
A real tragedy that this band wasn't given a chance to cut an LP or at least a few more singles as who KNOWS what else they may have come up with. However, it's kinda cool in a way that their one release is simply flawless. Too bad more people haven't heard it throughout the years. Kind of amazing that this record was released in the US at all; however, as this was the day when creativity ran free and the suits had no idea what those crazy kids were doing, musicians were able to freely explore their creativity. Too bad that hasn't been the case for a LONG time.
The Mark Four went thru a few lineup changes, but came back (shortly after this 1965 release) as The Creation. 'I'm Leaving' is a masterpiece of mood, controlled feedback and the ubiquitous blues influence that drove the British beat movement. Eddie Phillips' ground breakin guitar solo, essentially an extended feedback break, is pure genius, driven along by tribal drumming. While the Who pioneered the UK use of melodic noise, Phillips takes it to a completely other level here.
The Truth were a vocal duo (with studio musician backing, most likely Jimmy Page on guitar) made up of Frank Aiello and Steve Jameson. Here, the lads take the Young Rascals fabulous 'Sueno' and manage to increase the psychedelic ante even higher (culminating in a freak out ending that must be heard to be believed), on a song that is almost undoubtedly about the LSD experience. From 1967 (of course).
Late 1966 saw the release of the 2nd solo single from Yardbirds frontman Keith Relf. 'Shapes In My Mind' was written by yardbirds producer/ manager Simon Napier-Bell, and the lyrics can easily be interpreted as either drug inspired, relationship grief inspired or a combination of both. Keith turns in a very strong vocal performance, and the song is a wonderful example of the type of arty, avant garde pop that was changing the world in 1966-67. Sadly, the record didn't become a hit anywhere- it was just a tad bit too uncommercial and ahead of its time.